The consultation ran from today (22 March 2016) until 24 May 2016 and aimed to gather feedback on community pharmacy minor ailment schemes, prescribing of gluten-free foods, and prescribing baby milk.
CCG decision following consultation feedback:
Our CCG’s Governing Body met on 5 July and considered the pharmacy services consultation results. The CCG ran a public consultation from 22 March to 24 May 2016 asking local residents to give their opinions on three areas. The proposals and the feedback from the consultation were considered by the Governing Body at its meeting on 5 July.
The Governing Body members agreed to implement proposals to stop routinely prescribing gluten-free foods and baby milks and to end the minor ailment schemes in Cambridgeshire and in Peterborough. This change will bring us into line with neighbouring CCGs’ policies.
The Governing Body, including all of its GP members, supported this decision.
In summary, the changes that have been agreed are:
- to stop the supply of free medicines through community pharmacy minor ailment schemes.
- to recommend and support GPs to no longer prescribe gluten-free food.
- to recommend that infant formulas are no longer prescribed by GPs (unless it is a specialised formula for particular medical conditions unavailable on the high street).
We will support GPs to implement these changes. We are also working with community pharmacy colleagues to help support our population to make informed choices about self-care. We will work with specialist dieticians, gastroenterologists, and other health professionals to support those patients affected by these proposals.
The CCG has a significant financial challenge this year and the decisions on the above have been made in that context, but these changes are also in line with our aspiration to encourage and support patients to take charge of their own health and to empower patients to be responsible for their care and wellbeing.
We note and support the feedback from the Local Medical Council that a GP will continue to have the right and duty to prescribe any drugs that he or she feels are needed for a patient’s medical care whilst also acknowledging the General Medical Council advice that ‘prescribing’ is used to describe many related activities, including '….advising patients on the purchase of over the counter medicines and other remedies’.
The relevant policies will be updated and added to the clinical policies website in due course.
Should any patients be concerned they can contact the CCG’s Patient Experience Team by telephone on 0800 279 2535 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org